The time for a toad had come. In the RV world, the vehicle being towed behind an RV is called a “toad”. A great play on words and funny to boot.
The trips that I have made to date with the motorhome (Shaneeda) have been without a toad, only my bikes. During the last couple of week long trips, I’ve been able to imagine a variety of uses for the additional transportation (sightseeing, grocery run, etc…) and decided that if I am going spend lots of time doing this or even living in the motorhome, having a toad would be a good thing.
I started researching the options, prices, and pros/cons several months ago. I knew that I would be making a two thousand mile drive over the thanksgiving holiday to visit my family and set a goal of making a change after that trip. The last trip in the Nissan Murrano was a good one, it drove so smooth and is so comfortable that I hated to see her go. However; it is a terrible toad candidate being very heavy and unable to be flat towed – all four wheels on the ground – using a tow bar. A tow dolly was an option but they are not cheap and that adds more weight never mind the nuisance of hookup/disconnect.
After a bunch of research, I finally decided that a Jeep Wrangler was my best option. After pouring thru the used market for a couple of months, I finally decided on a newer model.
I simply love used car dealers and having to work with them but I swallowed my attitude (as best I could) and went to work. The end result was the purchase of a 2010 Jeep Wrangler Sport (JK). She is a lovely vehicle and a bunch of fun to drive – six speed manual transmission.
This morning, I decided a bit of off-road time was in order. I’ve seen pictures and video’s of guys having a blast off-roading but I had never tried it. That said, I have spent a lot of time on dirt bikes (as recently as about five years ago) and loved doing that. I wasn’t exactly sure what to expect but it just didn’t strike me as something that would be my cup of tea.
I drove out to a nearby area at which I used to ride my dirt bike. There are lots of Jeep trails there with plenty of hills. It is the type of stuff that I suspect a veteran would consider to be very beginner level stuff.
Well, I am surprised!
This little Wrangler just chugs right up some steep (to me) hills that I wouldn’t even want to walk up! The terrain that she rolls right on thru is pretty amazing. I started off VERY easy as I really didn’t want to get stuck and have to make the call of shame for assistance. Every time I’d try something a little harder, she treated it as if it was no big deal so I kept stepping up to bigger/harder obstacles. I found a variety of little climbs where it was obvious that people were getting stuck and having to back down. She just purred right on up the climb. This is a bone stock Wrangler – I can’t imagine what the heavily modified Wranglers can do! Very kewl – very fun!
I think I had my first peak into the “It’s a Jeep thing” saying and admit, it is a blast!